Monday, December 6, 2010
Coffee To Go, Part Two
Why I drove 600 miles to get my picture taken
The deep fried lobster chapter
In 1999, something magical happened. I went to the prom. No, not my prom (that was in 1998) but a friend's prom. We'd dated in the summer of '97 and he asked if I would go as his date. Always up for a good time and having a beautiful emerald green dress on hand, I said yes. I met a group of people there that I became very friendly with very quickly. I got closest to one girl in particular. When her boyfriend tickled her in the limo, her dress strap popped off! Oh the horror! We ran around the Marriott Marquis in search of a sewing kit before the prom started and I fixed her dress, no problem. Surviving such disasters brings people closer together. Alright, I know it's not like we made it through an earthquake or anything, but trust me, at 18, your dress popping open in Midtown is considered an emergency.
A decade later and we're still in touch. Sure, we've seen our share of rainbows and storms. Life has happened to both of us. She's married now to one of those high school friends and they have a beautiful little boy together up in Cape Cod. She started her own family photography business in their gorgeous neck of the Massachusetts woods and I went to visit in the hopes of having a fabulous photo of myself taken. I was by no means disappointed.
From the moment I got there, it was tea and girl talk. We hugged like old friends do and somehow, the time we hadn't seen each other faded into the background. It was as though we'd had pizza and gossip all the yesterdays before. There's a comfort in hanging out with people who knew you back when you barely knew yourself. Sharing inside jokes that only someone who was at a certain party in the year 2000 would find funny. Hearing about how her world has changed by becoming a wife and a mother. Knowing that your paths are different but the connection is still strong. I felt incredibly blessed to sit at her kitchen table, overlooking acres of dense wooded hills, watching her son play, thinking about how far we've both come.
We did have serious business to get down to and once her wonderful husband came home from work to hang out with the toddler, we wandered into the woods to take some photos. I have this dream that one day, my books will be published and I am in dire need of a fabulous picture of myself. I'm more often behind the camera than in front of it, so I enlisted the help of a professional for the shot. The first thing she did was make me crouch down in a field of wildflowers at sunset. Yes, I know how that sounds. But I'll tell you something - the very first picture she took of me is still my favorite!
She made me do other ridiculous things like lie down in the grass, hide behind some tall wheat stalks, and hug trees. I climbed up on rocks, straddled logs, and played peek-a-boo behind some ginormous branches. Everything I felt stupid doing in person (while she told me dirty jokes to get *real* smiles out of me) looked incredible on film. I shall not doubt her professional methods again!
We worked up quite an appetite in the Autumn dusk so we trudged back to the house to collect her husband and kid. I would like to add at this point that if all my friends were married to such kind, funny, caring, considerate, hard-working, generous men as she is, I would be VERY happy being a bridesmaid in all of their weddings. He's the kind of guy you just can't pick on (well, maybe except for his comic obsessions and video game playing - but I think that's more the rule than the exception!)
We packed ourselves into the car with their toddler listening to Jack Johnson on my iPhone. I've pretty much cemented my title in his mind as Aunt Music. The boy will probably never know my name. He'll just look at me and point to my phone for more music. Somehow, I'm ok with his. Whatever makes the kid happy.
They took me to their favorite little seafood place which closed for the season only a week after we were there. The restaurant was literally next to the Coast Guard station so of course, I took a picture and sent it to my brother! Inside, I ordered deep fried lobster and french fries which came with clarified butter. If my personal trainer is reading this, please accept my deepest apologies on behalf of my arteries. I am more than a little ashamed to admit that I dipped both the lobster and the fries into the butter and IT WAS GOOD!!!
Pretty sure my cholesterol level will not forgive me for that meal well into the next decade, but totally worth it!
You know those moments when you look around at the people next to you and think: I am so lucky! This was one of those moments. Ever since these friends moved four hours north, I haven't realized just how much I missed spending time with them until this take out dinner right now! We talked and laughed and they even tried to set me up with one of his hot co-workers who lives in Salem. I am totally ready to move to New England for a gorgeous Patriots fan (Sorry Jets peeps!) They even took a quick picture of me with the camera phone and texted it to him. Amazingly, it's a total cleavage shot. Completely unintentional, but couldn't hurt my chances!
We spend the rest of the night eating cheesecake around the kitchen table, teasing each other about old times, and scrolling through my online profile. They both laughed uncontrollably at the messages from The BirdMan of Bergen and threatened to disown me if I actually agreed to a date with him! I snuggled into the guest room for a peaceful night's sleep and in the morning, my girlfriend and I hit the beach for one more photo shoot before I got back on the road.
This time, I did everything from walking barefoot in the sand to laying down on the boardwalk (another boob shot!) My favorite moment came when a VERY cute fisherman was walking past as she had me hanging my feet over the edge of the wooden walkway. He stopped and asked us if this was an official modeling contract, if he'd violated some sort of set. We giggled and she snapped a couple photos of me next to him. Then he looked right at me and asked "Do you want to hold my pole?"
Ho. Ly. Crap. You can't make this stuff up!
He walked away, shaking his head in disbelief that those words had actually come out of his mouth when she shouted after him "This is Kimberly and she's single!!!" He laughed and I blushed and we ran back towards the car. Before we got in though, I left him a note (his was the only other car in the parking lot) that said "Hope to run into you on the beach again sometime. You seem like a great catch!"
Yes, I know how cheesy it was telling a fisherman he was a great catch. And no, in case you're wondering, he hasn't called.